Should you take the counter offer?

If you are one of the 57% of people who will be made a counteroffer at some point in their employment, the real question is – should you accept it?

The first question to ask is does the new employer job solve your concerns or offer a better opportunity? You will be subject to some persuasive tactics from your current employer and even the recruiter if they are involved.


It is invariably a costly irritation for employers to recruit your replacement and often they will do everything they can to keep you. They may offer large sums of money or increased benefits, titles and promises for the future. They can also apply strong emotional and psychological pressure. It can be attractive and tempting to accept.


However, once they know you thought about leaving will you have a black mark against your name from then on?


There are statistics quoted all over the internet including:


80% of people to accept a counteroffer resign in 6 months anyway

9 out of 10 who accept a counteroffer are actively looking within 3-6 months

57% of people will be made a counteroffer and approx 30% will accept them


It is hard to find the actual studies relating to these facts, however, the most reliable source is the Harvard Business Review in this article


The real issue lies in the fact that your current employer now knows you thought about leaving or worse still thinks you used the offer to gain leverage in your position. The manager’s main motivation will be to keep you in the role.  After all, it is easier for them to not have to replace you right?  


Really if you were so highly valued would they have waited to give you a pay rise as a counteroffer?


Should you take the counter offer – here are 10 points to consider…

  • You have now made your employer aware that you are unhappy. From this day on your commitment will always be in question.
  • It may affect you ability for further promotion or you may be overlooked as disloyal.
  • When times get tough, your employer may begin cutbacks with you – you won’t be about to make a counteroffer to them – you will be “let go”
  • It’s a bit disrespectful – why did they wait till now to solve your issue?
  • If it was monetary related, it shows you can be “bought” off
  • Where is the money for the counteroffer coming from? Is it just your next pay rise early?
  • What does the extra money mean – will your targets or expectations for your role increase in line with this too?
  • It’s a window into the culture of the company – only releasing value once you want to leave – it lacks loyalty to you!
  • Why didn’t they solve the issue before? Is it because they didn’t agree to think it was that important – well it was to you.
  • It’s easier and cheaper for them to keep you for the time being, while they sort the problem out.

Really the main one is something you already know and it is this…


Accepting a counteroffer rarely changes the factors that drove you to look for a new job in the first place.


The only person that really has your best interest in mind is you.  Your boss is just concerned about how this reflects on him/her or how it may impact the project or team or company.  If the opportunity is best for your career do you think they are considering that in the counteroffer?


If you really had a concern that you thought they could solve you would have or should have had the conversation before you start on the job search journey.  By interviewing and entering into career discussions you have already started the train leaving from the station.  Make the best decision for yourself and face toward the future.


About Career Lasso

We create recruiters at Career Lasso. Our comprehensive in-person and online training program and placement model is an excellent way to start your career in recruitment or train people already hired ensuring they are equipped with the tools needed to be the best recruitment consultant. Speak to us about our course or if you are looking to find that next recruitment superstar.

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